tv American Politics CSPAN May 3, 2010 12:30am-2:00am EDT
who can afford a football team of lawyers and accountants to get out of paying taxes, close those loop holes, give the money back to people so they pay no income tax on the first 10,000 pounds that you earn. that's 700 pounds back in the pocket of the vast majority of those of you. >> over the past few years, the tax man has taken more and more from the average worker's pay slip. if you were elected, what would you do about taxes? gordon brown, what would you say in response to david cameron? >> the reason for the national insurance rise is to ensure our health services, our police, and our education, and david cannot guarantee funding for police and education that will match what we are doing. but that's the reason for the national insurance rise, that nobody below 20,000 will pay it. six million people in this country receive tax credits, and the conservatives and the liberals have a plan to reduce tax credits for middle class families. i come back to the central question about fairness in the
tax system. if david wants fairness in the tax system, why does he support this inheritance tax cut for only 3,000 families with 200,000 pounds each? the biggest beneficiary of the conservative manifesto is as always the richest e states in the country and not the ordinary, hard-working of this country. if the liberals want to cut child tax credits, i can say one thing. i will never form an alliance with the conservative government that cuts child tax credits. >> david cameron? >> well, what you're hearing is very desperate stuff from someone who's in a desperate state, but you have heard from labour and gordon brown that if you earn 20,000 pounds or over, you're considered rich, you're considered a target for the labour government to go on wasting money this year and to hit you with taxes next year. let me answer this question directly about inheritance tax. i believe in this country that if you work hard and you save money and you put aside money and you try and pay down your mortgage on a family home, you
shouldn't have to sell that or give it to the tax man when you die. you should be able to pass it on to your children. it's the most natural human instinct of all. these other two parties simply don't understand that. inheritance acts should only be -- tax should only be paid by the richest and million nares, it shouldn't be paid by people who have worked hard their lives. it's not our top priority. should we try and encourage people to work hard and save? i say yes we should. >> nick clegg? >> i have to say, most creative justification i've ever heard, for giving tax breaks to millionaires. i think her point is that taxes are unfair on millions of people on ordinary incomes, not the double my nares that david cameron wants to help. millions of ordinary people are simply struggling to pay the weekly shopping bills.
at the moment, you will pay three days a week, you will pay about a thousand pounds of that in tax and nagsnalt insurance. under our plan, by listing 10,000 pounds, you won't pay any income tax on that first 10,000 pounds. i believe that if people work hard, particularly if they want to get off benefits and start work, even if it's just part time, we should help them keep more of their money. it is as simple as that. that is the fair thing to do. >> it means that we have tax credits and six million people benefit from that. as far as the teaching assistant is earning a very low income is concerned, there is the working tax credit that is available to them. i come back to the central question about fairness that has been raised by our questioner. how can david possibly justify an inheritance tax cut for millionaires at a time when he wants to cut child tax credits. let's be honest.
the inheritance tax is 650,000. if your house is worth less than that, you paid no inheritance tax. what david is doing is giving 3,000 people, the richest people in the country, he's going to give them 200,000 pounds each year. now, that is simply unfair. he also wants like me to cut the child tax credits from ordinary families in this country. i've got to speak out about this because it's simply unmoral and unfair for the conservatives to put this as their election manifesto. >> you're quite entitled to speak out, but the prime minister ought to get his facts right. so often he gets his facts wrong. we all remember when he told us the defense budget went up every year when in fact it didn't go up every year when he was sending troops to war. on this issue of tax credits, we are saying we like tax credits, we will keep tax credits. but for families earning over 50,000 pounds, we think we can't afford the child tax credit. that's one of the savings that we're being up front and frank
about. but for gordon brown to say the changes we're making will hit low income families is simply not true. last week in these debates he tried to frighten people, saying conservatives would take away benefits, when we will keep the winter fuel allowance. we will keep the -- he's trying again -- he should be ashamed of what he's doing. >> here they go again. tax credits, which i think -- the tax credits are really, really important. i mean, i think it's just -- i just don't think it makes sense really at a time when money is tight, that someone on my salary, which is a really good salary, could be entitled to the family components of tax credits. i don't think it's right to have tax credits going so far up the income scale, why doo we say not for the top 20% of recipients, you can target tax credits for people who need it. the other thing i would say is this. i've now had enough people in tears in my office in sheffield because they've been given money
one moment, they've spent that money on their children, on the heating bills, and suddenly they get a letter out of the blue from the government saying you've got to pay that money back. that is so unfair, on particularly single parents, single mothers, for whom the tax credits are an absolute lifeline. >> can i just ask you to clarify something? you said a little bit that both the liberal democrats and the conservatives wanted to abolish certain tax credits. and you couldn't support a conservative party that wants to do that. what about the liberal democrats? >> the liberal party wants to cut child tax credits as well. we're talking about tax credits paid to children. we have fought hard for a long time to make sure that we can give children and families decent incomes. the liberals will cut the child tax credits and so will the conservatives. the conservatives want to save $400 million. the lib rals, $1.2 billion. if institute of fiscal studies say that david's proposals were
misleading, incomplete, and regressive. i come back to this question. why cut children's tax credits for middle class families when you want to give a big inheritance tax cut to the richest estates in the country who do not need it at the moment? >> people can remember the record of 13 years. they remember who it was who abolished the 10-p tax that hit the poorest people in the country the hardest. they remember the immediately increase on pensions that gordon brown was responsible for. let me say this. the whole reason we're having this debate about how difficult it is to get taxes down, how difficult it's going to be to cut spending is because this prime minister and this government have left our economy in such a complete mess with a budget deficit, that this year is forecast to be bigger than that of greece. that's why we're having to have this debate. >> nick clegg, very briefly, if you would. >> you must be completely lost by all this political points
scoring. you are right. taxes are unfair. we have a plan. it's a great plan to switch taxes so that you get more money back in your pocket. that's what i think we need to do to make taxes -- >> let's go on to another question. thank you, mr. clegg. this is from ian gray. >> it is clearly grossly unfair for taxpayers who are funded the banks, but for bankers to award themselves huge bonuses. us ordinary people are worse off and many have lost their jobs. how will each party bring its version of fairness to this very unfair situation? >> david cameron? >> well, ian is absolutely right. it is completely unacceptable what has happened and we need to grip it very, very hard to sort this out for the future. the first thing we need to do is actually regulate these banks properly. we would put back to the bank of england the power to regulate the banks, including having a big say over the appalling bonuses that have been paid. the next thing we need is a bank levy. we say don't wait for the rest
of the word. put that levy on now to start getting back the money from the banks that so many people have had to put in. we also want to see the banks lending again, particularly to small businesses, and so we need to make that happen. and something else we need to do is this -- retail banks, banks that you and i put our deposits into, they should not be behaving like casinos taking wild bets, so we agree with president obama's plan, which is actually to say those banks shouldn't be able to take part in the most risky activity. that, i think, would start to get this under control and make sure the banks serve the economy and the people rather than the people and the economy serving the banks. >> mr. clegg? >> well, ian, specifically on bow nusses -- bonus, i would say we need to do the following. it sounds draconian, i say it's necessary. no bonuses whatsoever to the directors of banks. i don't want people who are actually running those businesses, which they should be running for the long-term interest of their business and
for their clients, to be kind of susceptible to the temptations of the bonus incentive. by all means, pay them lots of money, give them a fancy membership to a golf club, but don't give them these bonuses. then i would say absolutely no cash bonuses at all above 2 1/2 thousand pounds. finally, i don't think banks which are making losses should be handing out multibillion pound bonuses at all. so no bank, no bonuses and banks -- no bonuses for people at directors levels and no cash bonuses above 2 1/2 thousand pounds. >> mr. brown? >> david, i had to national -- take over the royal bank of scotland and halifax, and the reason we did so was to save the savings and deposits of families throughout the country. if we hadn't done that, then banks would have collapsed. now we've got to restructure the
banks in a way that was in the public interest. i have never been so angry is when i talked to the chairman of the bank who told me the night before his bank collapsed that all he had was a cash flow problem, when i knew it was a structural failing that was absolutely fundamental and the banks needed to be recapitalized immediately. we need to recapitalize the banks so that they are safe for people. we need to make sure that it's fair. we do need a worldwide agreement to get a global financial levy that is charged in every country so we're not undercut by other countries and there's a race to the bottom. but i would say to those bankers, we will never allow them to act in an irresponsible and unfair way again. >> david cameron? >> what i would say to what the prime minister has just said is that if you look at the labor record over the last 13 years, they did very much hitch the fortunes of the economy to the city of london. we got into a situation where we ended up with the whole economy
having to serve the banks rather than the other way around. i assume the banker was probably fred goodwin, so called fred the shred. it was this government that gave this man a knighthood for services to banking. he not only broke his own bank, he very nearly brought down the whole economy. there are big, big lessons to learn. i think the most important is that we put the bank of england back in charge of regulating the banks and give them the specific duty of calling time on debt in the economy. things got completely out of control. the banks were regulated but badly and by the wrong organization, and the one party that wants to scrap the current system and put the bank of england back in charge is the conservatives. >> mr. clegg? >> david cameron cameron has been talking about parties being too close to the city. the blunt truth is that both conservative and labor governments now for ages have been far too close to the city, basically prefering the interest of the one square mile of the
city of london, rather than 100 square miles of the whole of the united kingdom. i think we need to look fundamentally at what went wrong with the way in which banks are work. my view is this. as long as you have banks which mix up high-risk, free-wheeling casino investment banking on the one hand and the conservative sober retail high street banking, then you're asking for. many people say we should split up the banks between investment bank on the one hand and high street banking on another, in order to ensure that we never ever ever again have the banks hold a gun to the heads of the rest of the british economy. still we haven't done enough to protect ourselves of that risk in the future. >> mr. brown, do you want to respond? >> we have taxed with a two billion tax that came through in the prebudget report. we are making sure that every penny comes back, and that is why we are taking the action
that is necessary to recoop the money from the banks. i want a global financial levy that america, that i've been talking to president obama about, and france and germany that are at least part of, because i don't want banks moving out. of this country. northern rock failed. it was a small bank. hsbc is successful and it's a big bank. it's not the size of the banks, it's the way that some of them were being run. the answer, david, is not to do what you say in your manifesto. you are planning to cut corporation tax for banks in your manifesto. you got to take money from manufacturing industries in this region and give up the corporation tax cut to the banks. that, again, i'm afraid is the same old party. >> let me make one important part, which is having learned the lesson of having to bail out the banks. i think the next lesson we must learn is we must not put ourselves in the position of having to bail out other european economies. people need to know that the little democrats in their manifesto are still in favor of
joining the euro. as late as last year, nick clegg was saying the euro would be an anchor for our economy. what a massive strategic erro the democrats would have made. >> this is really getting desperate. i'm not advocating entry to the euro. only if the economic conditions were right. if it's good for jobs, good for pensions, good for savings. it has to only be decided on a referendum where you can vote on it. can i go back to the issue that was at hand, which is the banks. gordon brown talks about waiting for the rest of the world to catch up and impose a lev yism i think we need to impose a 10% tax, a 10% levy on the profits of the banks now. and i'll tell you why. under our tax system in this country, the banks can offset the tax they're supposed to pay against the lot they've already made. that means for some banks that they should not pay any tax at all, even though we bailed them out, and the only tax they would
pay would be this 10% levy we say would be on their profit. if you wait for the rest of the world to catch up, we will never, ever get around to doing this at all. >> mr. brown? >> we are taking the money back from the banks and we'll insist on doing so. we own the shares of most of the two big banks, and the shares as they rise in volume, we will recoop that volume for the country. so we've done a business for the country, which is to nationalize, but then to get the profit when we sell on the shears at a future date. we will continue to fight for a global levy, and it will happen this year. it will happen in a way that banks don't leave our country, that banks stay in our country. and i come back to the questioner, i ask david again, he didn't answer the question on inheritance tax. corporation tax, he's going to cut by three pence for the banks. why is he cutting corporation tax for the banks when he says that he wants to make sure that the banks pay their share? to cut it by three pence is money taken from manufacturing industry. again, it's the same old conservative party. >> briefly, if you would. >> we want a bank levy to get
the money off the banks that all of us have had to put into the banks. do i want to cut taxes on all businesss? you're damn right i do. we've got to get this economy moving, otherwise we're not going to get the jobs. we're not going to get the investment and wealth that we need. the finalist has got to face up to the fact that right now it's not working. small businesses come and say i've never gone over my overdraft limit. but i cannot get a loan. we've stuffed these banks full of money. they're not lending. and we need some action from a government that's going to roll up its sleeves, stop trying to defend its hopeless record, and recognize we need change to get our economy moving. >> thank you, mr. cameron. let's move on. we've got a question from jean simpson. >> this area used to be full of businesses. so many of them being shut down, sold off, and gone abroad. i want too know how you propose
to rebuild the country's manufacturing industries. we can't just have offices and shops. >> we can't just have offices and shops. nick clegg? >> i strongly agree with you, jean. i'm an m.p. for the city of sheffield, very proud of its industrial heritage. i think the first thing we need to do -- actually, i would say three things. first, get the banks lending. if you don't get the banks lending to manufacturing companies, it's like a body without blood circulating. i was at a small company a few weeks ago. very, very good example. they manufacture new environmentally sustainable lighting fixtures. lots of clients, lots of demand. they can't expand because the banks won't lend to them on reasonable rates. that is an outrage. the banks we -- they should be loaning more. the second thing we need to do is we need to invest in the kind of things we need in the future anyway. affordable housing, green energy, renewable energy, public transport, the kind of things
which create jobs for our young people, help moring, and create the green infrastructure. what i think we need as a country in any event. >> gor down brown? >> i visiting a manufacturer today who is involved in selling to the rest of the world, including to china and asia with the most advanced precision manufacturing. i believe over the next few years, we can create 400,000 jobs in low carbon industries. i believe we can create half a million jobs in the digital industries of the future. i believe biotechnology in this region is very good, as well as advanced manufacturing, can see 100,000 jobs. but we as a government are investing with these companies in the equipment that they need for the future, so i am optimistic about the future of the british committee, and optimistic about this region. what i would insist on, however, is that the banks do lend, and that's why we've appointed an arbitrator, where people are disidentified with what the banks decide, they can go to them and we will back them up. secondly, we will continue to
give investment allowances, which would be abolished by the conservatives, and thirdly, we will maintain the regional development agencies, which, again, the conservatives want to remove. it's very important we back regional manufacturing in this great center of manufacturing industry for our country. >> just a reminder of the question, this area, the birmingham area, used to be full of businesses. many have been shut down, sold off, and gone abrausmed i want to know how you propose to rebuild the country's manufacturing industry. we can't just have offices and shops. >> i think jean is absolutely right. here we are in birmingham. this was known as the city of a thousand trades. and yet, in the last 13 years, we've lost 60,000 jobs in manufacturing. we've been losing manufacturing industry faster than the 1980's. been a complete tragedy. how do we rebuild? start with investing in our science base and making sure great universities like this are producing the scientists and
entrepreneurs of the future. let's make sure we invest in apprenticeships. so much in the budget is wasted. we say let's have an extra 200,000 apprenticeships. that will make a difference. but you can't ignore the basics of actually making it easier for businesses to employ people. that's why i come back to point that if we keep putting up the cost of one person saying to another person come and work for me, we're never going to get more employment. so it's science, technology, apprenticeships, making sure we reward entrepreneurship. and yet, having low taxes for businesses. that's part of getting them here and keeping them here. >> so how do you respond to the arguments of the other two, nick clegg? >> actually, i agree. i think we all must agree on the points about investing in new technologies, investing in our young people. i was at college here in birmingham today. young people developing vocational qualifications, which we need for the skills of the future. it's a good thing that basically all the parties agree on. i come back to this point that i
made to jean earlier. unless you've got banks helping businesses, it is extremely difficult for them to expand their products, invest in the factories, and actually invest in creating new jobs. who would have thought here in birmingham of all places, that a bank that you own, r.b.s., should have been involved in lending money, money that you've given to them in the taxpayer bailout, should have used that money to fund or help fund craft, the american multinational takeover, leading to job losses in britain. did you think that money would be used to put people out of work in britain? no. and it was wrong. >> we have gone from 70,000 to over 200,000 now and we want to raise that number considerably over the next few years. at the same time, there are more students going to university than ever before now in our history, and i'm pleased to say that the majority of students are now women.
to help manufacturing, the regional development agencies have the power to support individual businesses and there's more than 20,000 firms in this region receiving help with cash flow under our program time to pay. but the problem is now. you can't take money out of the economy now, as david proposes, and hope that businesses can survive with orders. you've got to keep the money in the economy. you can't take investment allowances away from businesses, as david proposes to do, to pay for his corporation tax cut for banks, without manufacturing suffering. you cannot help the region if you take away the regional development agency that's doing so much good. we've got to act now. we cannot take money out of the economy and we've got to support manufacturing and not withdraw the support that david would do with his policies. >> david cameron? >> i think there's this complete confusion between the government and the economy, and gordon brown doesn't seem to understand that actually to get the economy going, you've got to help
businesses employ people. you've got to cut their red tape, cut their regulations. let me tell you one thing government could really do to help. government is an enormous purchaser of goods and services, and yet it hardly buys anything from small to medium sized enterprises. we say government should give a quarter of its contract to the small firms, ones that are actually going to be the success stories of tomorrow, and let's make it easier for firms to register with the government so they can buy services and sell services to the government. that would actually help to get them going, the great businesses of tomorrow. that's what we need to build. >> should we just briefly discuss these points that have been made? nick clegg, first. >> i want to come back to this point about how one takes the right decisions to support the new technologies, the new manufacturing industries of the future. i think it's fairly obvious. if you look at the huge number of offshore wind turbines, which are now being installed off the coast of britain in all sorts of places, that we should be a world leader in manufacturing this new green technology.
and yet, the only manufacturer of onshore wind turbines is recently closed, and the biggest offshore wind projects off the coast of kent, 90% was build in denmark and germany. why we're not using smaller amounts of money to invest in dock yards and shipyards so we manufacture the new green technology as well. >> wind turbines and the development of the offshore wind industry is one of our priorities. we are now the world's leading offshore wind power and there are four companies that have announced that they're going to invest in wind power in this country as a result of government incentives and we're doing the same for digital because we want broadband in this country that will serve every community including the rural areas. you have to have some government finance to persuade people it's necessary to go to 100% and not to 70%. buying technology, we are investing substantial sums in
the leading cancer and research center for the whole of europe that will be in britain as a result of the investment we're making. but i come back to this point. if you cut investment allowances, if you cut the regional development agencies, and if you do that to cut corporation tax for banks, your putting manufacturing industry at risk and doing the opposite of what is needed now. >> all right, thank you. >> you keep saying cutting corporation tax for banks. you ought to cut for small firms whatever they do to try and help them keep more of their profits to reinvest, to expand, to take people on. that's what a growing economy needs. right now, we're stuck, and the prime minister talks about renewable energy. after 13 years in the labour government, we've got the newest shares of renewable energy of any in europe. we've had nine energy ministers, i think two of them were the same person. several energy strat justice, but nothing ever happened. what we need is change for a
government that understands business, that feels the beating heart of entrepreneurs within it and gets things moving. >> why are you cutting investment allowances for the manufacturing industry? why are you also going to take away the regional development agency and scrap the functions? what good does that do to the wested mylands, and what's the regional development agency to work for that? >> we are cutting taxes for businesses in our forthcoming budget, if we win the election. something else we'll do, we say to every new business that starts up, the first 10 people you take on, you shouldn't have to pay national insurance contributions. that's the sort of thing to get the economy moving. instead, what we have with the current government is these vast regional bureaucracies paying themselves huge sums of money and not actually helping the businesses that really want to get our economy moving. >> thank you very much. we're almost halfway through this debate, and we've got a number of other top i thinks to come -- topics to come to, apart
from the economy. these three parties are of course not the only ones in the united kingdom asking for your vote next week. if you live in scotland, you'll be able to hear from the s.n.p. on tonight's 10:00 news, as well as news night at 10:45 on bbc-2. and on sunday at bbc-1, scotland's four political leaders go head-to-head. if you live in wales, you can the 10:00 news in wales. the leaders of all parties will be on a special edition of "news night" on bbc-2 wales. the leaders are also going to debate on sunday at 9:00 on bbc-1 wales. and there will be a debate between the leaders of the northern islands small main parties next tuesday on northern ireland. finally, you can hear from the greens on the news after this debate. now, let's go on to another question. take this one, please, from
bradley russell. >> are the politicians aware that they've become removed from the concerns of the real people, especially on immigration? and why don't you remember that you are there to serve us, not ignore us? >> gordon brown? >> the only reason i came into politics was because i saw what was happening in my local community, and i've got the good fortune of being a member of parliament for the people i grew up with and the people i went to school with. and the reason i want to be in politics is to create jobs. and when it comes to immigration, i want to see a situation where we increase the number of jobs that people trained in britain can take as we lower the number of people coming into this country. that's why we have banned unskilled workers from outside europe from coming into britain. that's also why we're cutting the number of semiskilled and skilled workers that can come in. that's why we've got a list of occupations we now want to reserve for people in britain
and not for people coming from abroad. what we are doing at the moment is training up people so that in the next few years, as we move forward out of this recession, the jobs will go to people trained in britain who have got the skills in britain, and that goes right across from chefs and care assistants, to nurses and, of course, to teachers. that's where we want to be for training people for the future. .
i think we have to have a regional approach that if people come and work here they don't work and aren't allowed to work in regions where there isn't work for them to do, where there will be an unreasonable strain on public services and we need to deal with the criminal gangs who have been exploiting the illegal immigrants who came in because of the chaos in the system. that is a fair, effective, workable approach dealing with something which has been -- which is of immense public concern. >> the politicians are aware they've become unconcerned with the immigrant people. >> are we there to serve people and how best do we serve them, including action on immigration? i want to create jobs for people in this country and i
know in my constituency i know in birmingham and the west midlands people are worried about their jocks and worried about job security and they're worried about whether their children and teenage sons and daughters can get a job and that's why i want to give a guarantee to every young person under 25 that if they're unemployed for a few months they'll get a job. i want to say to adults that there are jobs available. i want to protect people in jobs so if you're on short time, you can get tax credits. i want to make sure people get jobs. as far as immigration is concerned, to tackle illegal immigration we've got biometric visas, we've got foreign national i.d. cards and we're going to be tracking people in and out of the country. we're taking the action and i want to see that action working by the measures that we're bringing in. >> what's your response? >> of course we have to improve the system. but i think we also have to get a grip on the numbers and this is an important issue.
people need to know what are in our manifestos. i set out my policies but people do need to know that the liberal democrats propose amnesty for illegal immigrants. that could mean some 600,000 people who are here illegally would actually be allowed to stay here and be given full citizenship, access to welfare, access to housing and bring a relative each into our country. i think that just doesn't make sense. that i think is a complete mistake that would make a bad situation we've had after 13 years of labor even worse. and that's why i say, let's grip this problem, let's talk about it sensitively and sensibly, let's bring immigration down to more manageable levels and i think actually the public will respond by making this not an issue at future elelele e e e e >> i don't want you to be misled by cameron. i'm not advocating amnesty. the only politician who is is boris johnson, conservative mayor of london. i think we need to do something
about the fact that there are lots of people living in the shadows of our economy. brown and cameron just want to deny it and pretend it will go away. it won't. people have been living here for years and years and in the shadows of our to society, it's the nasty criminal gangs bho exploit them, exploit us and create crime in our communities. one other thing. when we deal with something as sensitive as immigration, let's at least be open and honest and straight with you. david cameron says that you can put a cap on immigration. it is complete nonsense and he knows that 80% of people who come into this country come from the european union. you can't cap those numbers so you shouldn't pretend to people, give them false hope that you can bring numbers down when you can't control them in that way. i think it's wrong to raise false hopes on such a sensitive topic but it's perfectly clear the liberal democrats do propose an amnesty. they can't get away from that. and refugee action. one of the actually very respected voluntary bodies has
criticized them for that and i think for good reason that we should in this country be trying to encourage people and reward people for doing the right thing. if you have an amnesty for illegal immigration you're saying to people who came here illegally, who didn't have the right to come here, that's ok and to the people who are queuing up who want to do the right thick and obey the rules, they're being punished. that's one of the things that's wrong in our country at the moment. we need a different set of values and this is not them. it just doesn't make sense. >> i agree with david on this because i can't see how you send out anything other than the worst possible message if you give amnesty to people who have come here illegally and i don't think nick has presented his policy in the way it's in his manifesto because there is a suggestion that there is an amnesty after 10 years for people who come to this country illegally. >> maybe i should explain. >> i'll give you a chance to explain in a motion. >> i think to send out this message is wrong because it encourages other people to want to come illegally. but david is also a question to answer, he says there should be a cap but he won't give the
figure. it's once again the conservative party concealing something that either they should tell us or they should just say that they're not going to do properly. >> maybe he should explain, having david cameron and brown the star of all politics making misleading claims. i think there is a problem. it's a problem i didn't create, you didn't create, they created. it was conservative labor government that created chaos in your immigration system so that lots of people came here illegally. now they're here. ok. it's a problem. they're here, whether we like it or not. so i think we've got to deal with it and i'm saying that for those who have been here for a decade, who speak english who want to play by the rules, who want to pay taxes who want to come out of the shadows, do community service to make up for what they've done wrong, it's better to get them out of the hands of the criminals so we can go after the criminals and into the hand of the taxman. you can pretends all you like that you can deport people when you don't even know where they are. i'm coming up with a proposal, it might be controversial, but it's dealing with the way the world is. get real.
this is a problem you created. we now need to sort it on a oneoff by a sills. it's a oneoff problem which need as solution. >> i think it is profound and misguided. nick has talked, not tonight, but talked about 600,000 people having this amnesty, being able to stay. and they would be able to bring over a relative each. so that's 1.2 million potentially. and all those people would have access to welfare and to have -- i think this could -- >> why don't we save time -- >> will you explain the number then? >> instead of making endlessly misleading comments let's save time. every time you talk about our policy it's wrong. what i'm saying is there's a layer of illegal immigrants. we have to deal with it. we have to get them out of the hands of criminals and you say numbers. could you tell me, am i right or wrong, that 80% of people who come here come from the european union and your cap would make no difference to that whatsoever? is that right, yes or no? >> we've said new e.u. countries will have transitionle controls. we know what happened when
poland joined the european union. we were told 13,000 people would come and it was closer to a million. the democrats cannot riggle on this. 600,000 people, if that's the number they should come clean about that. yes or no. >> do 08% of immigrants come from the european union which wouldn't be affected by your cap? >> it's affected by having transitional -- i've answered your question. now answer mine. >> let's bring mr. brown in. >> i hate to enter into private here, both of them have got this wrong, i'm afraid. nick is wrong to send out a message to people that you can come here illegally and then you'll get an amnesty. david is wrong to mislead people about his cap. because it doesn't include people from the european union, doesn't include large numbers of people who have dependents and university students. what he would do it is make it impour for businesses to recruit people from abroad and he's never given us a number for his cap. he has to tell us what his cap is or stop telling us there is going to be a cap when probably
there's not going to be. >> there's two parties that won't rip immigration and one that will. we want to see net immigration in tens of thousands, not hundreds of thousands. since gordon has been in government, it's never been lower than 140,000. >> you're not answering the question. >> never been lower than that. under the last government it was never higher than 70,000 a year. it can change. >> he just won't answer the question about what the cap is and nick wouldn't answer the question about how he can justify an amnesty for illegal immigrants because he's sending out a message, come to britain and you'll be legalized in a few years' time. it does not make sense and i'm sorry -- >> let me repeat again. there is a problem that you have created. people who came here illegally because of the chaos your government created in the immigration system. we have to deal with it. it would be easier for me to pretend it's not a problem. it is a problem. it's helping criminals, i don't want to help criminals. i want to get those people into the hands of the tax man. if they shouldn't be here they should be deported but neither
cameron or brown even know how to do that. so let's get real with the way the world is rather than the way we'd rike to think it should be. >> thousands of criminals out of the country every year. >> we must move on to another question. i'd like to have one from anna haywood. >> i'm married, my husband is an accountant and we have two children. we work really hard and between us have a good joint wage yet still we cannot afford our own family home, nor the larger deposit necessary these days. what will your party do to help families and others in terms of housing? because if a chance -- if an accountant is priced out of the market, what hope is there for anybody else? >> i have every sympathy with you because frankly the day in our country, i think people who try and work hard and save and obey the rules and do the right thing all too often they just find hurdle after hurdle put in their way. whereas people who actually don't play by the rules, who
don't think about saving and don't think about their behavior often get rewarded and that's not right. what can we do to help you? first of all we've got to get spending under control so we stop putting your taxes up. we also say that we should have no stamp duty on the first 250,000 pounds that people, if you can buy a property for less than that. that would help. but above all, we've also got to build more houses. i think there's no doubt in my mind that we got to change the planning system. right now it's so milltates against people building houses and we think we need to scrap these topdown targets that make local communities so angry, put reward cancels that build houses for families like yours. >> nick. >> i hear about this more than anything else as i travel around the country. the lack of affordable housing. people in your situation but then there are 1.8 million families, that's five million people, who are still on the waiting list for, you know, an
affordable home. i would do three things. firstly there are hundreds of thousands of empty properties in our communities boarded up no, doubt there are many in birmingham, too, which i think for a relatively modest amount of money you could convert into homes which people could live in. it is just not right that people either can't afford or can't find places to live in and we have all these empty properties. we have a plan set out to convert 250,000 empty homes into homes that people can live in. secondly, i would give local councils more freedom to borrow against their own assets so they can invest in building new homes and the third thing i would do all these empty flats we see in our city centers built for one person, i think they should be converted into homes that people need for young families like yours. >> gordon broub. >> the house building industry has really not served us well in this country. and when the crisis happened, the building firms didn't have enough capital, weren't able to survive and so many went under.
and yet there is a pentup demand for housing in our country. there are one million more homeowners than there were just over 10 years ago. so most people are buying their homes. what i would like to do, we have extended stamp duty relief for first time buyers so that is available now. shared equity is something that might be considered because that's a chance to buy up a part of your house and it's becoming a more popular way of doing things and we are able to help finance that and work with the building societies and banks. the third thing is, of course, getting the building societies and the banks to lend again and we've signed these agreements that require them to lend 92 billion this year, a lot of that for mortgages. fourth thing is using up empty property, giving local authorities the power to build and making sure that housing associations have also the power to. >> i want to create an owner-occupied majority in this country and i want to increase home ownership and i want to do it quickly with the measures that we're taking. >> mr. cameron, what do you make of the arguments? >> first of all, we should
build more homes that are part rent, part mortgage. because i think that gives people -- i've seen this in my own constituency, the chance to get one foot on the housing ladder and they kin crease the mortgage and redules the red. that helps. also, rewarding responsibility. people who live in housing association omes or cancel homes with a record of good behavior, give them a stake in that house. so when they move they have the start of some capital to move up the housing ladder. one thing we shouldn't do and this is in the liberal democrat manifesto, is putting v.a.t. on building new homes. that would just lift the price of new homes even higher out of people like anna's reach. a big, big mistake. it just doesn't make any sense. >> nick. >> i talked about how i think we need to convert empty properties, i've talked about how we need to give councils the freedom to build new homes. i certainly see in lots of our great city centers these flats
which are designed for one person, the private property developers have put up these houses, lots of them standing, they should be available to families but there is a role for good old fashion council houses. i was very proud when i was up in new castle the other day to see that the liberal democrat council there has started building some council houses again for the first time in 30 years. they help as well. they might not help you and your family, but the more housing you get in supply, the easier it is for everybody. on the issue of that i just think there's a funny, you know, glitch in the v.a.t. system at the moment, that you pay no v.a.t. on new build on greenfield sites and so on if but if you invest in your own home, you get a chance for the full v.a.t. rate. i think there should be an equal v.a.t. rate and set it at a lower rate. >> what nick is saying, and we're scratching beneath the surface now, is there would be v.a.t. on new homes under a
liberal policy. what i think is however right is that we do, as we've done, encourage local authorities to build and that's why lots of local authorities are again building. but you know, i think the other thing that matters is what i call shared equity. that is part rent, part buy, but it's a housing association, a bank or building society working with the owner and gradually you buy up your house. and i think that's going to be far more popular, particularly for young people in the years to come. the key to all this is low interest rates. and we've got to keep interest rates lower and we have kept interest rates low even during this recession and we've done so for the last few years. i want interest rates low for existing homeowners and for people buying their own home. i'm afraid the liberal and conservative policies are too big a risk to inflation and to interest rates for the future. >> i want to move on to another question. this one from graham parken. >> i'm retired, having worked all my life and find it galling that some who haven't paid into the system abuse it by living off state benefits.
what are you going to do to prevent this abuse? >> nick. >> well, i think one of the biggest issues which i think you're touching on is how to encourage people who are on benefits to move into work. and i was really delighted at the institute of fiscal studies when they compared the three parties' manifestos this week said very, very clearly and directly that our proposal to lift the income tax special to 10,000 pounds is the best incentive to work. because if you keep more of your money when you start working, particularly on low paid work and part time work, then of course you have an incentive to get off benefit. for too many people i meet to say, it's not worth my while to get off benefits because housing benefit in particular gets withdrawn so quickly as soon as you start earning money, that actually when the sums are done and quite rightly people look at this closely and think, it isn't worth me working. we need to give intendtives to work. our plan is to do that. i believe in work. i think work is one of the most important things in society. because people self-respect and
i want to encourage it and that's what our tax proposals would do. >> his question was that he finds galling that some who haven't paid into the system abuse it by living off state benefits. >> no light from the door. that's my policy. we've got to get people off unemployment benefit and they're going to be forced to work if they've been on unemployment benefit for a period of time. we're giving an offer to young people at the moment under 25. if you've been unemployed for six months, we'll give you worker training because we don't want the unemployment of the 1980's for young people. we don't want to lose a labor market for future and we don't want our lost generation. but we're saying you're compelled to work. you cannot take this as an option, you're going to have to take up the job and the training. so that's true for the long-term unemployed. it's true for people who have been young persons unemployed for six months. we're also doing a great deal to try to get people on incapacity benefit back to work. and the record of doing that is large numbers of people are now moving back into work not enough but we're trying to do it. i believe in work, too.
because i've been brought up that work is the way that you reward people but it's also the way you find self-esteem. my britain is one where i want more people working, more people working without being on benefits. >> what i would say to graham very simply is we should have a very straight forward approach. we should say to people, if you can work and you want to work, we'll do everything we can to help you. we'll get you the training, we'll get you what you need. if you're offered a job that you can do and you don't take it, you cannot go on carrying on taking your benefits. you've got to say no to that. now, the prime minister has just said, i wrote it down, no life on the doll. but we've had 13 years of a labor government. and there are five million people on out of work benefits. there's still three million people almost on incapacityy benefit. they've had so long to do something about this. here we are tonight talk about the need to cut waste and the need to cut budgets. shouldn't we start with people who can work but refuse to work so people who have done the
right thing don't have to feel as graham does? i've had so many people in this campaign who have said to me, i go to work and walk past houses where i know people could work but choose not to. that's just not acceptable and we need chining change to make that happen. >> this is your chance not to repeat what you've already said but to respond too to what the other two say. >> graham used that word galling. one of the reasons you might find it galling is that when you've retired it, you say you had retired, when you've retired that you -- of course you then find that the benefits you get, particularly the state pension, aren't as generous as they should be. that's why i think one of the things we need to do immediately after this general election is restore the earnings leak in pension. there's been a huge amount of talk about it from both of the old parties. let's get on and do it. it was broken by the conservative government, hasn't been restored under 13 years of the labor government. let's get on and do that. the least that you and everybody else deserves when you retire, having worked hard,
having paid into the common pot, is that you get a decent state pension when you retire. and i hope that would do something to make that experience you're talking about feel a little less galling. >> the question was about preventing the abuse of state benefits. >> he's right. the pension should be linked to earnings and we'll do that in 2012 when we've got the resources to do so. we've also introduced the winter allowance for all pensioner households where someone is over 60 and that's 250 pounds and 400 poundes for people over 80 and we're trying to do the best for a new regime for pensioners where women have a full state pension which they haven't had in the past. to come to benefits, we're making it a condition for young people, they've got to take a job, we're making it a condition now for people who have been long-term unemployed that they've got to take a job. yes, we've got 2 1/2 more people in work than -- 2 1/2 million more people in work than in 1997 and yes we've got more young people in training and in education than we've had
before, but yet also we've got to go further and these are the measures of exullings, a requirement to work and a responsibility to work. >> when it comes to ending welfare dependency, labor have had 13 years to deal with it and haven't and the liberal democrats have got virtually nothing in their manifesto. i think one of the big sebses people have on this issue is people who have worked hard, saved, put money aside, when they go into residential care, they have to pay every penny, including selling their home where as people who haven't saved get whole thing paid for free. i'd love to make it all free, you can't, there's no money. if you can put aside 8,000 pounds when you turn 65, you should get your care for free. that would remove one of the major unfairnesses. it doesn't solve the whole problem but it does remove one of the unfairnesses in our system. >> what do you see as the key differences between your positions? >> let me perhaps just draw out one of them. we're the only party actually
in this general election campaign who've got a plan to get people off benefits and into work and that's been independently recognized. i think it's a general sort of almost philosophical issue. do you think that the best way to help people who are vulnerable or poor is to constantly give them more benefits through greater dependency on the state or do you provide incentives to let them help themselves where they can? that is what our very, very radical tax switch, so you keep more money when you start working, would precisely do. it would get people off that benefit dependency and into work. i think it's what most people agree is the absolute most priority these days. >> you know what the difference is. because we do not want to generation of young people growing up and not working. that's what happened in the 1980's under david's policy. they left a generation, a wasted generation, and we've been dealing with the consequences. so we're saying, every young person should either be in training with an apprenticeship or a college or a university or
preparing for that training. and everyone should be compelled to do one of these things. you can't have a something for nothing society anymore and you understand 25's will have to take up the opportunity of work or training if they're not employed. that's the best way to do it but we've got to get young people into work. we cannot have a situation where they're on the street corners. and we can't have a conservative party that keeps opposing all our jobs proposals including our future jobs fund that is designed to stop youth unemployment in the country. i just think the conservative party is still living in the age of 1980's and 1990's. it's the same old toys. >> i'm unsure which country gordon brown thinks he's prime minister of. in britain today there are actually 900,000 young people not in employment, not in education, not in training. he's caused record youth unemployment. we see unemployment today 40% higher than when he came to power in 1997 after the longest and deepest recession in our history. so to talk about this as if somehow he's got a magnificent
economic record is nonsense. to answer nick's point, of course you need better incentives. it's outrageous today that a single mum trying to go back to work gets 95 pence for every extra pound she earns taken away by the state but you do need a penalty. if you go on refusing the offer of a job you can do, you should lose your entitlement to benefits for up to three years. i think that is important. you need to have that as well as the incentive to encourage people to work. >> we all agree that benefits should be conditional, we agree that benefits shouldn't be dished out for free if people refuse to take up welfare. we agree on that. what where we disagree is that i have a plan to make sure that taxes reward work when you start work. particularly on -- to get you off benefits. cameron's priorities are to give tax breaks to double millionaires and gordon brown has no plan for lower taxes on people with lower incomes. that's a big difference, it's a big choice. >> the institute of fiscal
studies that you reported a few minutes ago said that the proposals are highly speculative. they don't know how year going to get the money. that's what they say about your proposals. they're not thought out. you're too big a risk for the economy just like david is. we're trying to get people back to work in difficult situations, lower interest rates, get the economy moving, don't take money out and shrink the economy now, that's the way to get people back to work. >> all right. we'll go on to a question from michael. >> i teach in a very deprived area of birmingham. what will you do to ensure that the children i teach have as many opportunities in life as those from any other school? >> of course education is the subject topic policy deinvolved from england, scotland and whales, northern ireland. what will each leader do to make sure that the children have the same opportunities in life in a very deprivinged area, from those of any other school? >> my mother used to say that when i was growing up, that
what was available for a mother and for a parent was maternity services when the child was born, then you were called for vaccination for these different vaccinations and then you were told to come to primary school at the age of 5. now we've got nursery education, 3 to 4-year-olds, now we have children centers, 3 50,000 now across the country, and we're moving forward by making the child tax credit even higher for the parents of under 3-year-olds. now, that's the sort of way that we can help give chances but i'm interested in social mobility. so you've got to help children under 5 develop the potential, you've got to have personal tuition at the schools that people fall behind, you've got to encourage young people to stay on at school and get qualifications and this is the way that we can have a new generation of middle class jobs in this country, where young people can -- from poor backgrounds can get the opportunities they've never had before and that's what the
social mobility that i want to promote is all about. >> david cameron. >> well, first of all, michael, i'd like to say a big thank you for what you do because i think teachers perform the most incredibly important work in our society. and we should do more to value them, to respect them and to raise their status. i think one of the most important things we can do is give the teacher and the head teacher in particular control back over their school. discipline is the absolute foundation of a good education. and right now it just doesn't work. we have something like 17,000 attacks each year on teachers and you get kids who can be excluded from school, including one in manchester who's excluding a student for having a knife who then gets put back into the school by the appeals panel. that's not right. make the head teachers captain of their ships, let them have proper discipline, change all the crazy rules that stop teachers searching for banned items and make sure you have proper discipline. then we need to raise aspirations as i'm sure you do in your school, and open up
education and have the big societyy we say, new bodies that want to come in and set up great schools, come on in, we want choice, diversity and excellence in our state sector. that's where i send my children and that's where i know we've really got to do better than we do today. >> the question is about a teacher teaching in a deprived area of birmingham, do you do you -- how do you ensure as a leader that they will have the same opportunities in life as those from any other school? >> in specific answer to your question, what we want to do and we've set it out from one of the biggest pledges in our manifesto is to take 2 1/2 billion pounds from the 15 billion pounds of savings that we've already identified elsewhere in government spending so that we can raise the money given to pupils, the million poorest children, to the same level which children get if they go to other schools. because i think the issue that michael's risen is one of the biggest the country faces.
the latest poor child gets taken over by a wealthier child by the age of 7 and after that the gap tends to widen and it even affects life expectancy. a child born in the poorest neighborhood of sheffield, for instance, today, is likely to die a decade and a half before a child born in the wealthiest neighborhood up the road. that needs to change. we've got a plan to deliver more one-to-one tuition, smaller classroom sizes, to help those children the most in the crucial early years when they started school. >> what's your reaction to what the other two have said? >> i'm pleased this question is about teaching and from a teacher because you never forget your teacher. you remember your teacher, you remember what they did for you and teachers are so important. i want any underperforming school to be taken over by a good school and that's what we're trying to do at the moment. but you can't escape this fact about poverty. if you cut child tax credits, if you charge for nursery education, if you cut the
schools' budget then you put the future of these young children at risk. and i'm afraid the liberals and conservatives want to cut child tax credits, david also wants to charge for nursery education. at the same time he wants to cut the schools' budget which we would continue to finance and therefore he's making the people who are the poorest pay the cost of his policies while he's still got this ridiculous policy on inheritance tax. >> i think you've heard it all from a prime minister who's just got absolutely nothing left positive to say. 13 years, 13 years of economic failure, 13 years sadly of quite a lot of educational failure, 13 years in which inequality has got worse in which deep poverty has got worse, in which they haven't got the grips of the problems and that's what you hear. here are some positive things we'd do. we've got to get the basics right. i'm very clear that teaching children to read and write using the old fashion method, that works best. setting by ability, you accept
that not every child's the same. let's stretch the brightest pupils and then those who are falling behind. i had a big argument this week with someone about special needs education. i want every child to have a choice between special education and mainstream education. but let's stop closing the special schools that do so much for families in our country. education is about the basics, yes, it's also about then aspirations, saying to every child, no matter where they come from, you can go all the way according to your talent. that's what education should be like. and that's what it would be under our government. >> of course grorden brown's right -- gordon brown's right saying there's a link. there's a link between poverty at home and underperformance in the classroom. it's that link, it's that link which is holding back so many children. that's what's unfair. and that link is the link that i want to help solve and we would do it partly through the tax proposals i've talked about earlier, giving people 700 pounds back in their pocket by raising the income tax threshold to 10,000 pounds, so that people on ordinary incomes
aren't being helped at the moment, i hope, and through our proposal, we call it a pupil premium. it means extra money, 2 1/2 billion pounds, that would, for instance, allow our schools to reduce the average class size in an average school down to 20. i've got three young children. two of them go to a local school. i see for myself as a father that what happens to a young child at reception class, years one, two, three is so important in developing their self-confidence, their social skills, their willingness to learn. get it right at an early age and we can help people later in life. >> i feel passionate about opportunity for infants and young children. and that's why we introduced the child tax credit. that's why we've created the children center that are now focuses for the community. that's why nursery education is at 3 and not 4. that's why we're financing personal tuition for people in the schools so that if they fall behind they can catch up.
but i do say all this is at risk because david is not answering the question. he's going to cut child tax credits, he's going to cut the schools' budget, he's going to cut nursery education by charging for it and he's got a coalition with cuts on child tax credits, they're going to cut child tax credits for the future. that is not the way to deal with the problem that our questioner, who is so concerned about opportunities for children, have raised. you can't solve the problem by taking away all the advances we've made. >> i just think people will see straight through that as an attempt to try and frighten people. i have two children, my eldest is at a state school in london and i want every penny of the education budget to follow children like mine across the play ground and into the school. and i say after 13 years of a labor government, there's a lot of waste we can cut out. there is -- you know, people in education who spend 300 million pound as year. there's the fact that head teachers get 4,000 pages of information every year.
the department of children's schools and families spent three million pounds on itself including a massage sweet and a con tell place room. i know that working in this government can be tough, but really we don't need those sorts of things. cut the waste, get the money into the classroom and stop right to to frighten people. >> i'll come back to you, mr. brown. >> let's try to disentangle these claims. of course gordon brown is right to say that the conservatives, i don't know why they want to cut the schools' building program. it's a silly thing to do. we need to invest in our school building. but for brown to make these claims that tax credits, a comeback is a simple thing, when money is tight it's not right that someone on my salary could be entitled to have tax credits. why do we focus that money on where it's really needed and also use the money that we can save elsewhere to invest in those individual children that who need that individual care?
it could be saturday morning classes, evening classes, one-to-one tuition, smaller class sizes. all those things makes the most dramatic difference to a child's education. >> a million people would lose child tax credit from both of your proposals. >> we have to bring this part of the debate to an end with that question. thank you very much all three of you. now, we end with final statements from each of the three. party leaders. david cameron. >> thank you. i'm standing here for a very simple reason. that i love this country. and i think we can do even better in the years ahead. we can go on, solve our problems and do great things but we need a government with the right values. we need a government that backs families and understands that the family's the most important thing in our society. we need a thing that backs work and people who try to do the right thing. and we need a government that
always understands that keeping a safe and secure is the most important thing of all. but there's something else you need to know about me which is, i believe the test of a good and strong society is how we look after the most vulnerable, the most frail and poorest. that's true in good times but it's even more true in difficult times. and there will be difficult decisions but i want to lead us through those to better times ahead. i think i've got a great team behind me. i think that we can do great things in this country. if you vote labor, you're going to get more of the same. if you vote liberal, as we've seen tonight, it's just uncertainty. if you vote conservative on thursday, you can have a new, fresh government making a clean break and taking our country in a new direction. and bringing the change that we need. >> thank you. for the liberal democrats, nick . >> everything i've said during these three television debates is driven by my simple belief that if we do things differently we can from a better, fairer britain.
as you decide how to cast your vote, of course you'll be told by these two that real change is dangerous, that it can't be done. but don't let anyone scare you from following your instincts. together next week we can change britain for good. just think how many times you've been given lots of promises from these old parties and when they get back into government you find that nothing really changes at all. we can do so much better than that this time. of course i can't guarantee you that all the problems you face will be solved overnight. but i can guarantee you that i will work tirelessly to deliver fairness for you. fair taxes so that you pay less, the people at the top pay their fair share, a fair start to smaller class sizes for your children, a different approach to the economy and decent, open politics that you can trust once again. i believe all this can happen. this is your election. this is your country. when you go to vote next week,
choose the future you to really want. if you believe like i do that we can do things differently this time, then together we really will change britain. don't let anyone tell you that it can't happen. it can. this time you can make the difference. >> thank you. now from gordsen brown. >> these debates are the answer to people who say that politics doesn't matter. and i want to thank everybody who's been involved in these debates over the last few weeks. they show that there are big causes we can fight for. they also show that big differences exist between the parties. i know that if things stay where they are, perhaps in eight days' time, david cameron, perhaps supported by nick clegg, would be in office. but i've had the duty of telling you this evening that while we have policies for the future, the conservatives would put the recovery immediately at risk with an emergency budget. and i've asked david and nick
questions all evening, david has not been able to confirm that it is the case that inheritance tax will go to the richest people in the country. i believe that he's planning to cut the schools' budget and he hasn't denied it. i believe also that child tax credits will be cut by both parties if they came into a coalition. i believe that policing would be at risk from a conservative government because they have not said that they would match us on policing either. and the health service guarantees that we have that gives every cancer patient the right to see a specialist within two weeks, that would be scrapped by the conservative government if they came into power. now, i don't like having to do this but i've got to tell you that things are too important to be left to risky policies under these two people. they are not ready for government because they have not thought through their policies. we are desperate to get this country through the recession and into the recovery and that is what i intend to continue to do but it's up to the people to decide and it's your decision. >> mr. brown, thank you. and indeed, thank you to all
three party leaders who have taken part in this debate and to our audience here. i hope that the debate here along with the other two may have helped you to decide where to put your crosses next thursday. i'm going to be back with question time later. from the great hall of birmingham university, goodbye. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010]
>> the british election is may 6 and c-span is covering the three main party leaders as they campaign to be the next prime minister. we talked with a body language expert about the first time ever tv leaders' debates. >> in order to come across as a really competent believable politician, there are three things you needed to do. one, you need to project an image of power, you need to look like a power. that may have something to do with what you have to say. but it also inevitably has to do with how you say it. and how you behave. secondly, you need to also project an image of somebody who is likable, affable, approachble and sincere. finally, what's really important is that you manage to disguise your disquiet. in other words, if you're feeling anxious you have to find a way to conceal it. mask it. those are the three things that all politicians need to do and what i've been interested in over this debate is the way in which the three contenders project images of themselves as
prime minister al material, -- prime ministerial material, hand gestures, even though they don't know they're doing it, the ways they try to come across as an average joe, joe the plumber, and whether they succeed or fail in the process. i'm also really, really focused on those tiny little signs that people give off inadvertently, those give-away signals that tell us as the viewers and potentially anybody, that these three contenders are in a state of anxiety. my central belief is that while politicians go on and talk about policy, principles, values, programs, all these kinds of things, it really in the final count, it's not about that at all. it's all about style. but they hate that. and yet even though they hate it they know they've got to do
it. because as we've seen in the case of, you know, so many american presidential elections, those kinds of things, particularly when these contests take place on television, those kinds of things are absolutely critical. and decisive. the first leaders' debate, there are -- debate, there were several indications of what was going on. i was fascinated by the ways in which all three party leaders try to -- tried to trump each other in the leadership state. a lot of hand gestures, using stiff wrists in order to appear manly. presentations of the knuckles as opposed to the palms in order to show that they mean business. and that they're potentially as remain -- aggressive. the viewers, even though they don't rizzro -- recognize this to be the case, will take in this information and they'll form their finances on the basis of it, complete -- opinions on the basis of it, completely forgetting what's being said. >> the third and final leaders debate is this coming thursday. you can watch it on c-span this
sunday night at 9:00 p.m. eastern and pacific time. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] >> look for a link to our british election page under featured lynx on the right hand side of our home page. c-span, our public affairs content is available on television, radio and online and you can also connect with us on twitter, facebook and youtube. and sign up for our schedule alert emails at c-span.org. >> president obama traveled to louisiana sunday to get a firsthand look at the response to the b.p. gulf of mexico oil spill. he met with governor bobby jindsle and some of the first responders and held a breafing to talk about federal efforts to assist with protecting the gulf coast environment. the president also talked about
the attempted car bomb incident in new york city. i also want to commend the vigilant citizens who noticed the suspicious activity and reported it to the authorities. i just got off the phone on the way down here with mayor bloomberg to make sure that state and federal officials are coordinating effectively. since last night my national security team has been taking every step necessary to ensure that our state and local partners have the full support and cooperation of the federal government. we're going to do what's necessary to protect the american people, to determine who's behind this potentially deadly act and to see that justice is done. and i'm going to continue to monitor the situation closely and do what it takes at home and abroad to safeguard the security of the american people. we just finished meeting with
admiral allen, our national incident commander for this spill, as well as coast guard personnel who are leading the response to this crisis. and they gave me an up date on our efforts to stop the b.p. oil spill and mitigate the damages. i want to point out, i was told it was drizzling out here. is this louisiana drizzle right here? they gave me a sense of how this spill is moving. it is now about nine miles off the coast of southeastern louisiana. and by the way, we had the governor of louisiana, bobby jindal, as well as parish president, who are talking -- taking part in this meeting. we want to emphasize the importance of coordinating between local, state and federal officials throughout this process. now, i think the american people are now aware certainly the focus is down in the gulf that we're dealing with a
massive and potentially unprecedented environmental disaster. the oil that is still leaking from the well could seriously damage the economy and the environment of our gulf states and it could extend for a long time. it could jeopardize the livelihoods of thousands of americans who call this place home. that's why the federal government has launched a hands-on-deck relentless response from day one. after the explosion on the drilling rig, it began with an aggressive search and rescue effort to evacuate 115 people, including three badly injured. and my thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the 11 workers who have not yet been found. when the drill unit sank on thursday we immediately and intensely investigated -- intensely investigated by remotely operated vehicles the
entire 5,000 feet of pipe that's on the floor of the ocean. in this thank process, three leaks were identified. the most recent coming just last wednesday evening. as admiral allen and secretary napal tano have made clear -- napal tano made clear, we made preparations from stage one to stage equipment for a worst case scenario. we immediately set up command center operations here in the gulf and coordinated with all state and local governments and the third breach was discovered wednesday. we had hundreds of thousands of feet of boom at that time. i dispatched the seconds of the interior and homeland security, the administrator of the e.p.a. , my assistant for energy and climate change policy and the administrator of noaa to the gulf coast to ensure that we are doing whatever's required to respond to this event.
so, i want to emphasize, from day one, we have prepared and planned for the worst even as we hoped for the best. and while we have prepared and reacted aggressively i'm not going to rest and none of the gentlemen and women who are here are going to rest or be satisfied until the leak is stopped at the source, the oil on the gulf is contained and cleaned up and the people of this region are able to go back to their lives and their livelihoods. currently the most advanced technology available is being used to try and stop a leak that is more than 5,000 feet under the surface. because this leak is unique and unprecedented it could take many days to stop. that's why we're also using every resource available to stop the oil from coming ashore and mitigating the damage it could cause. and much of the discussion here at the center was focused on if
we and when we have to deal with these mitigation efforts. thus far as you can tell the weather has not been as cooperative as we'd like on this front. but we're going to continue to push forward. i also want to stress that we are working closely with the gulf, state and local communities to help every american affected by this crisis. let me be clear, b.p. is responsible for this leak. b.p. will be paying the bill. but as president of the united states, i'm going to spare no effort to respond to this crisis for as long as it continues. and we will spare no resource to clean up whatever damage is caused. and while there will be time to fully investigate what happened on that rig and hold responsible parties -- responsible parties ktble, our focus now is on a full >> coordinated relentless re response -- fully coordinated relentless response effort. i want to thank the americans
who have worked to stop this crisis, whether the brave military men and women or the gulf residents, they've done everything to help our fellow citizens. during this visit, i am hoping to have the opportunity to speak with some of the individuals who are directly affected by the disaster. i've heard already that people are understandably frustrated and frightened, especially because the people of this region have been through worse disasters than anybody should have to bear. but every american affected by this spill should know this, your government will do whatever it takes for as long as it takes to stop this crisis. this is one of the richest and most beautiful ecosystems on the planet and for centuries its residents have enjoyed and made a living off the fish that swame in these waters and -- swim in these waters and the wildlife that inhabit these shores.
this is also the heartbeat of the region's economic life. and we're going to do everything in our power to protect our natural resources, compensate those who have been harmed, rebuild what has been damaged and help this region persevere like it has done so many times before. that's a commitment i'm making as president of the united states and i know that everybody who works for the federal government feels the exact same way. thank you very much, everybody. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> next, the pennsylvania democratic candidates for
senate debate. then, a discussion on the future of american jobs. after that, q&a with author ahmed rashid. the u.s. senate returns monday at 2:00 p.m. eastern to continue debate on the financial regulations bill. the newest version creates a new consumer protection regulator and sets new rules for derivatives and some other complex financial instruments. the bill also sets up a process to dissolve large financial companies that fail. senators will continue to offer amendments next week with votes planned on tuesday. live senate coverage here on c-span 2. iranian leader ahmadinejad is scheduled to speak monday at the u.n. conference on nuclear nonproliferation. find key moments from his past speeches online at the c-span video library. every program since 1987.
watch what you want, when you want. now a debate between senator arlen specter and congressman joe sestak. both democratic candidates running in the may 18 primary for the u.s. senate seat from pennsylvania. this senate seat has been rated as one of the most competitive races in the country with the latest polls showing senator specter with 4% of the vote and congressman sestak with 42%. their only televised debate took place last night in philadelphia. and was hosted by the pennsylvania association of broadcasters foundation. it's an hour. >> this is the pennsylvania senatorial democratic debate, sponsored by the pennsylvania association of broadcasters foundation. >> hello. i'm president of the pennsylvania association of broadcasters foundation. on behalf of all the free over the air broadcasters serving the commonwealth, i welcome you to our debate featuring the
democratic ballot candidates for the office of the united states senator. here to moderate our debate is the highly respected veteran legislative correspondent from the "philadelphia daily news." >> good evening and welcome to this, the one and only senate democratic debate for the year 2010. i'm john bare from the philadelphia daily news d. let me tell you about the forecast. there are no opening statements. each candidate will get 90 seconds to answer each question, each candidate will then also get 90 seconds to have rebut thal comments. the order -- rebuttal comments. the order of questionings and closing statements were determined earlier by the luck of the draw. the candidates are here and they are united states senator arlen specter of philadelphia, united states congressman joe sestak from the seventh congressional district representing parts of chest ever, delaware and montgomery
counties. the first question going to -- goes to senator specter. senator, what do you see as your main challenge in convincing pennsylvania democratic primary voters that you are the best candidate to face the republican nominee this fall? >> the fact that i have voted with the democrats during my tenure in the senate on the really big issues, more than with the republicans. i have supported democratic values. that's why president obama has supported me, governor, that's why the democratic state committee endorsed me with a i have supported a woman's right to choose, opposed warrantless wiretaps, i have stood with the democrats and the democratic values on the big issues. at the outset of this debate there was one item which needs to be cleared up. i want an apology from congressman sestak for his
television advertisement which calls me a liar. i've been in public service for 43 years, including wearing the cloth of a -- of my country in the united states air force. nobody has ever called me a liar. if the navy times d is wrong in saying that congressman sestak was relieved of duty because of poor control climate -- command climate, then the navy times owes him an apology. but what i have said is based upon fact. when i have challenged him on his voting record, it's a fact. 127 missed votes. what i challenge -- when i challenge him on not paying the minimum wage, it's a fact. but when he calls me a liar, that's out of bounds. i want an apology. >> senator, that's your time. before we go to congressman sestak for the first question, would you like to respond to that? i'll give you 30 seconds. >> i want